A 30-year-old mother who beat her children of ages 10, 12 and 13 after they broke into a neighbor’s residence has been arrested. The incident has inspired debates related to parenting and its extent. People are now divided as to whether or not the degree of discipline was called for, considering the age of the children.
According to a probable cause affidavit from the sheriff’s office, Schaquana Spears from Baton Rouge, Louisiana was taken into custody on two counts of cruelty to juveniles. The affidavit further states that Spears beat her children after they “burglarized a residence down the street” on Friday.
A hoverboard, electronics and socks were among the items that were stolen from Alisa Nicholson’s house. The boys were instructed by their mother to return the items to the neighbor.
As reported by The Advocate, Spears was questioned by the local district attorney and has become a subject of major criticism. The incident has sparked a debate about child abuse, highlighting how far should parents be allowed to go to discipline their kids.
In an interview with child services officials at the juvenile detention center, the 13-year-old boy said he was whipped by an RCA cord. He sustained lacerations to his arms and marks across his legs, shoulder, back and stomach could be seen. He was bleeding. The 12-year-old boy sustained cuts on his arm while the 10 year old had a scratch to the hand.
According to WBRZ, Spears said she had been made like the “bad guy for trying to discipline my kids and showing them right from wrong.”
“It’s been hell,” Spears said. “I never could imagine that trying to be a good mother would end me up in jail with a criminal record like I’m a predator out to hurt my kids who I live for.”
Nicholson said she felt “so bad” for Spears, who “did what she was supposed to do.”
“Her kids broke into a house that they could’ve got killed at, or the police could’ve seen them going in and shot them,” Nicholson said. “And I feel so bad that all this had to happen from her whooping her kids for them breaking them into someone’s home –- which is very dangerous, especially these days.”
According to online inmate booking records from East Baton Rouge Parish Prison, Spears has since been released, ABC News reports.